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Author Topic: Growling Duchess  (Read 600 times)

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Offline ten0G

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Growling Duchess
« on: June 01, 2018, 11:14:51 am »
Hi All,

I recently succumbed to evil-Bay and snagged my first used loco.  She arrived before the bank holiday.  I realise it was a bit risky, but a good-looking maroon Duchess (current version) at a very good price is hard to resist.  Sadly though, I have to accept that there may be a problem with her, because since initial satisfactory testing she makes very strange growling noises at low speeds and runs jerkily, especially in reverse.  Sometimes the motor whines before she moves off. 

There are various options:
  • Accept that up to the last time I ran her, she was capable of doing what I want (running at speed with an appropriate load),
  • Return her for a refund to the seller in the next few days, on the basis that there has been a problem all along, or
  • Send her for repair if necessary.
I have decided to stop running her until I can find out if it will make things worse. 

I hope that maybe some Forum members can advise me on what the issue(s) may be please, and how to handle them.  Regrettably, there is little I can do myself, I have no workshop facilities available or any suitable tools at present. 

I also wonder if any of the problems were caused by events during my second test session.  I will give an account of both test sessions in the following post.  Many thanks for reading. 

Offline ten0G

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #1 on: June 01, 2018, 11:19:48 am »
1st Session

An initial test run on an oval of 282mm radius Kato track did not show any problems and my normal running-in procedure of both forward and backward 15-minute sessions at -speed was carried out in each direction.  I did not, however, lubricate the loco as per running-in instructions.  It was noticed that the tender is off-centre with the footplate slightly to the left of that on the loco.  A mix of eight Bachfar and Dapol coaches was added and no problems were noticed in either direction. 

At this stage I thought her quite acceptable, subject to finding out how many coaches she could handle at top speed on a larger test circuit.  This consists of a longer oval of double track with 282mm radius on the inside and 315mm on the outside, with facing and trailing left and right no. 6 points (718mm-radius) combined with left and right 15 crossings. 

2nd Session

Wednesday was my first opportunity since the holiday to set up the layout and I started by running her at -speed without a load.  To begin with all was fine and she went through all the pointwork without a problem.  Then I increased the speed to full.  While she was running on the track with points set straight ahead all was fine, but when I changed the points and she took the righthand path which leads to the righthand crossing, she turned left on the crossing abruptly stopping at an angle to the tender.  There were no apparent issues with the corresponding lefthand point/crossing, or the righthand point associated with it.  A repeat run produced identical results. 

Mystified, I turned her around and tried the other direction.  Everything seemingly fine at -speed.  I increased the speed to full and then set the points to take her through the lefthand point/crossing.  No problem there, or with the other righthand point, but when she came to the righthand crossing (from the opposite direction off a 718mm-radius curve), it happened again. 

When I set the points so that the lefthand path was powered, she started forward again and the tender followed.  I realised at that stage that the abrupt stops occurs when the tender reaches the dead part of the crossing.  I retired for a rethink. 

I decided to try my previous Track Shack purchase whose testing had been cut a little short, a Bachfar Castle.  She went round light-engine with no problems at full speed, I even increased the speed to Max on the controller briefly without incident.  I added nine Blue Riband Mk 1s and after a few circuits concluded there were no problems with the layout. 

Then I changed the Castle for the Duchess.  I could not get her away smoothly with her load, she made some unusual noises until I had turned the power up to about -speed. 

I had to interrupt the session there, when I resumed I removed all the pointwork and inner oval and tried again.  Less growling noises up to -speed, from that point to top speed there did not seem to be any problems and I increased the load to eleven coaches, then thirteen which she seemed to handle quite adequately as long as I turned the power straight up above -speed. 

However, I then heard whining noises and thought I should try to understand the problem before further running.  There was no burning smell or overheating noticed at any stage.  I have examined the underside, but there appears to be nothing amiss to my untrained eye, all the valve gear seems fine. 

I could consider lubrication but want to be careful not to overdo it.  The only other action I could take is to place her upside down in the servicing cradle and apply power using the feeder track.  All comments gratefully received, thank you. 

Online Bramshot

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #2 on: June 01, 2018, 11:34:11 am »
Is this the Farish Princess Coronation Class Duchess of Rutland?

From your description of your tests is it correct to assume you are DC?

If it is this loco, I have to report that in my experience they generally run superbly at all speeds, I use DCC?

I assume the loco is not fitted with a decoder?

This loco is loco drive, with wires between loco and tender carrying both pick up current from the loco wheels and motor current back to the motor.  Your saying that the loco stops when the tender is on an unpowered section of track makes me wonder if only the tender pickups are working, I.e. there is a broken wire between loco and tender?

Offline Leon

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2018, 01:51:20 pm »
I'm unable to assist with your problem, but note that you are using Kato track. I'm a novice still in the planning stage, but have already bought several locomotives and quite a lot of coaches, wagons, and Kato track and points. I'm favorably impressed by your clear writing and the way you've analyzed and articulated your problem. I expect to face many issues as I continue my project, and I, too, have bought some used locos on eBay which I've not tested. I'll be seeking advice along the way and will be grateful if you are willing to enter a dialogue at the appropriate time. I'm presently in Britain (near Bath) and will be returning to the United States (Boston area) on June 11. My project is planned to consume the greater part of two years (or more, if I live that long!). It will be based on the Westbury, Wilts rail junction, using Kato track and points exclusively - a challenging project for a newbie, but I like ambitous challenges. :)

Leon

Offline ten0G

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #4 on: June 01, 2018, 02:35:25 pm »
Is this the Farish Princess Coronation Class Duchess of Rutland?

From your description of your tests is it correct to assume you are DC?

If it is this loco, I have to report that in my experience they generally run superbly at all speeds, I use DCC?

I assume the loco is not fitted with a decoder?

This loco is loco drive, with wires between loco and tender carrying both pick up current from the loco wheels and motor current back to the motor.  Your saying that the loco stops when the tender is on an unpowered section of track makes me wonder if only the tender pickups are working, I.e. there is a broken wire between loco and tender?

Thanks.  Yes, maybe a whole new meaning to the word "Rutland" given her propensity to turn left on a righthand diamond!  Non-DCC I hope, as she was running quite happily on DC.  Would a loose/faulty blanking chip be a possibility?  DCC is too expensive in my case, much as I'd like to understand it. 

On the layout, there is no power to the track being crossed until the points are changed so I would not expect her to continue along that route.  The dead section of the crossing often strands slow-running tank locos, and even the Castle if I run her slow enough.  However, I will consider testing the Duchess in the cradle powering the tender only if there are no other apparent possibilities.   

Offline ten0G

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2018, 03:12:15 pm »
I'm unable to assist with your problem, but note that you are using Kato track. I'm a novice still in the planning stage, but have already bought several locomotives and quite a lot of coaches, wagons, and Kato track and points. I'm favorably impressed by your clear writing and the way you've analyzed and articulated your problem. I expect to face many issues as I continue my project, and I, too, have bought some used locos on eBay which I've not tested. I'll be seeking advice along the way and will be grateful if you are willing to enter a dialogue at the appropriate time. I'm presently in Britain (near Bath) and will be returning to the United States (Boston area) on June 11. My project is planned to consume the greater part of two years (or more, if I live that long!). It will be based on the Westbury, Wilts rail junction, using Kato track and points exclusively - a challenging project for a newbie, but I like ambitous challenges. :)

Leon

Thanks Leon, I started using Kato when I lived close to Tennoji in Osaka.  In Japan, there are several similar kinds of track, I chose Kato on a recommendation by another Forum member in Tokyo.  I'm not sure where the track I have here was made (US?), but the quality is not as good as that from shops in Japan in my view.  It is rather limited without slips, though.  Be very wary of #4 points!  There are a number of useful threads on here regards Kato track, and also some instructional videos on YouTube on tailoring the track and points in various ways. 

I just use it for test-running everything I buy, quick to set up and dismantle.  For the layout I'm hoping to build, I'm considering code 40 bullhead Finetrax if the slips ever appear, otherwise it will probably have to be code 55 flat-bottom Peco. 

I've only been through Westbury once, so can't really comment on the station layout in any era.  I think it may have been included in a book of GW station layouts I borrowed from the local library about 30 years ago(!), but I'll check to see if it's in a book I have about GW signalling. The present-day layout may be very different of course. 

Sadly, I live too far away to meet you, but good luck with your endeavours. 

Edit:  I've dug out the signalling book and glanced through the index of boxes and diagrams but Westbury isn't listed, sorry.  I have no idea offhand what the title of the layouts book might have been but I'll see if I can track down box diagrams for you another way. 

« Last Edit: June 01, 2018, 04:07:47 pm by ten0G, Reason: Information added. »

Online Bramshot

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2018, 03:23:42 pm »
If you have a multimeter, do a continuity check between the tender and loco wheels on each side. LHS loco and tender wheels should be connected together, as should the RHS, (only the drivers, of course).

Is it possible that there is a dcc chip that is set to work on dc?

The test you proposed should be to the loco wheels only to identify if there is a broken wire. Tender wheels connect directly to the dcc chip / blanking plug and thence to the motor, so applying power to the tender wheels has to work, unless there is a broken wire internally in the tender -worth knowing if there is, of course.

The puzzling thing is that it worked ok to start with. I thought that perhaps the derailment you described could have broken a wire between loco and tender, and the smaller number of contact points could have led to the rough running.

I found one of my coronations would not originally take a set track small radius point. Running in, in both directions so that the loco sees both left and right curves seemed to sort that out. My theory is that the flanges as supplied new have a surface roughness that helps the loco to climb the rail, and running in gave the flanges a bit of a polish. The second one I have never had any problems at all, though I have adopted that running in practice ever since the first one.

For yours, once you have sorted out the running problems, check the state of the front pony truck. Is it loose, restricted in movement at all?

Offline Leon

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2018, 04:41:16 pm »
Thanks for taking the time to respond! I've bought my Kato track and points from a variety of sources on eBay and Amazon, some U.S. sources and some Japanese. I'm aware of the issue with #4 points and have bought only #6. However, after a suggestion on this forum, I switched my computer generated plan to #4 on the sidings to provide straighter and longer runs. The plan looks cleaner, but I still have my reservations about using #4. I'll be tweeking my plan some more before deciding if I want to try a couple of #4 points.

When I return home, I'll be setting up the configuration that you're using for testing locomotives. I've bought six already and none have been tested. I'm a few weeks away from construction of my 8' x 4' layout.

I'll be grateful for anything you find that might be helpful, and your comments and suggestions are welcome. I've posted my layout plan on this forum, and the subsequent revised plan. As I've mentioned, though, the revised plan includes #4 points which I may replace with #6. I've already revised the "revised" plan to flaten some of the sharp curves, necessitating some minor adjustment to the whole layout.

Leon

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2018, 04:55:56 pm »
I seem to have blundered in thinking this thread was about Dame Maggie Smith, so I'll leave quietly :sorrysign:

Offline ten0G

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #9 on: June 01, 2018, 05:18:13 pm »
I seem to have blundered in thinking this thread was about Dame Maggie Smith, so I'll leave quietly :sorrysign:

Did you have a hat & coat?  ;D

Online Newportnobby

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2018, 08:05:56 pm »
I seem to have blundered in thinking this thread was about Dame Maggie Smith, so I'll leave quietly :sorrysign:

Did you have a hat & coat?  ;D

Ermine lined cloak, I'll have you know :P :)

Online Hailstone

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #11 on: June 01, 2018, 10:47:45 pm »
It is possible that the motor has become unseated in its mounting, which can cause total loss of traction if the motor moves upwards enough (see below)



hope this helps,


Alex

Offline ten0G

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2018, 01:52:07 pm »
If you have a multimeter, do a continuity check between the tender and loco wheels on each side. LHS loco and tender wheels should be connected together, as should the RHS, (only the drivers, of course).

Is it possible that there is a dcc chip that is set to work on dc?

The test you proposed should be to the loco wheels only to identify if there is a broken wire. Tender wheels connect directly to the dcc chip / blanking plug and thence to the motor, so applying power to the tender wheels has to work, unless there is a broken wire internally in the tender -worth knowing if there is, of course.

The puzzling thing is that it worked ok to start with. I thought that perhaps the derailment you described could have broken a wire between loco and tender, and the smaller number of contact points could have led to the rough running.

I found one of my coronations would not originally take a set track small radius point. Running in, in both directions so that the loco sees both left and right curves seemed to sort that out. My theory is that the flanges as supplied new have a surface roughness that helps the loco to climb the rail, and running in gave the flanges a bit of a polish. The second one I have never had any problems at all, though I have adopted that running in practice ever since the first one.

For yours, once you have sorted out the running problems, check the state of the front pony truck. Is it loose, restricted in movement at all?


It is possible that the motor has become unseated in its mounting, which can cause total loss of traction if the motor moves upwards enough (see below)



hope this helps,


Alex



Thanks very much Guys,

At least it doesn't seem to be the case that I was listening to a botched repair failing.  I am still concerned that further running could do more damage however. 

Not having a multimeter or a set of appropriate tools to open her up, that's about as far as I can go other than checking the chip is still properly seated without doing some shopping or sending her away for repair. 

Perhaps I should try to a suitable set of screwdrivers.  Where can I get some idea of the most useful sizes please, as neither Bachfar or Dapol seem to include those details in their instruction sheets. 

One other question in my mind is whether any soldering would be necessary, especially with regard to an unseated motor? 



Online Hailstone

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #13 on: June 02, 2018, 02:23:06 pm »
Take a look at this thread, it may help

http://www.ngaugeforum.co.uk/SMFN/index.php?topic=27538.msg300837#msg300837

Regards,

Alex

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Re: Growling Duchess
« Reply #14 on: June 02, 2018, 03:04:27 pm »

Perhaps I should try to a suitable set of screwdrivers.  Where can I get some idea of the most useful sizes please, as neither Bachfar or Dapol seem to include those details in their instruction sheets. 


I'd suggest a set of these wouldn't go amiss. Cheap as chips :D......

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01E7ETKFU/ref=asc_df_B01E7ETKFU52906718/?tag=googshopuk-21&creative=22122&creativeASIN=B01E7ETKFU&linkCode=df0&hvadid=256502455094&hvpos=1o2&hvnetw=g&hvrand=8559452498141437505&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=9046524&hvtargid=pla-433068087345

 

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